God's Fidelity Fuels Believers' Confidence, Says Pope

Comments on Psalm 131(132):11-18

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VATICAN CITY, SEPT. 21, 2005 (ZENIT.org).- Benedict XVI says that God’s fidelity constitutes the source of a believer’s confidence and joy.

The Pope delivered that message in his address at today’s general audience, which attracted about 26,000 people to St. Peter’s Square. He was commenting on verses 11 to 18 from Psalm 131(132) which speak about the promise of the Messiah that would be born of David’s lineage.

At one point the Holy Father set aside the pages of his prepared text and repeated the words, “God’s fidelity is the source of our confidence and joy in the turns of history.”

In this biblical passage that begins with the transfer of the Ark of the Lord to the city of Jerusalem, God formulates “a promise that he will not retract,” the Pope said. But this promise is conditioned by an “if” — “if your sons keep my covenant,” the Holy Father noted.

“To God’s promise and gift, which has nothing magical about it, there must be a response of faithful and active adherence on the part of man in a dialogue that weaves two freedoms, the divine and human,” Benedict XVI declared.

Psalm 131(132) becomes, as the Pontiff acknowledged, “a celebration of God — Emmanuel who is with his creatures, lives among them and makes them good because they remain united to him in justice and truth.”


He then clarified that “this hymn thus becomes a prelude to John’s proclamation, ‘And the Word became flesh and lived among us.'”

In fact, the Fathers of the Church saw in Psalm 131 a description of “the Incarnation of the Word in the womb of the Virgin Mary,” the Holy Father said.

“In this way, we see God’s truthfulness and fidelity in the great span that goes from the ancient psalm to the Incarnation of the Lord. In this psalm, the mystery of God who lives among us appears and shines forth as he becomes one of us in the Incarnation,” the Pope said at the end, improvising.

Benedict XVI was continuing a series of commentaries on the Psalms and canticles that make up the Liturgy of the Hours. Other commentaries are posted at www.zenit.org/english/audience.

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